Review by skeletorissatan

"A fantastic third installment"

The Dead Space series has been the subject of much discussion within the gaming community in recent years for many reasons. The first game was an inventive survival horror game released in an age in which Call Of Duty dominates the gaming market and even the original survival horror franchises such as Resident Evil and Silent Hill have watered down their scares in favor of an action based style of game play. In place of the shooting dominated gaming that makes up those games, Dead Space brought something fresh to the table in the form of a slow-burning scare simulator set on a Space Stations populated by the walking corpses of the crew, warped into creatures called Necromorphs. The second game expanded on this a little by introducing various new mechanics and making it faster pace whilst never undermining the scare factor of the first game. The formula that made these games so successful had fans of the games so pleased and overwhelmed that a third installment was quickly pushed into development, ready for an early 2013 release.

Dead Space 3 has completely scrapped the relatively slow pacing of both games in favor of a game that as soon as the player crash lands on the frozen planet Tau Volantis, it throws you straight in at the deep end. This game has a much larger volume of enemies to fight with combat constantly being right around the corner, whilst never forgetting what made the original Dead Space so incredible-the element of surprise. Enemies will still pop up out of nowhere from the dark corners that you thought were empty, and you are still almost guaranteed to die many times purely from the shock of having a Necromorph run directly up in your face and bite your head clean off. The strategic dismemberment of enemies that populated the previous game and made for such beautiful carnage returns in Dead Space 3 and is every bit as satisfying as before especially after an enemy pounces from beneath a patch of snow that you have just walked over as will happen many a time. Dead Space 3 is perhaps the most tense game in years and takes a pointer from Cold Fear that a game does not have to be set in murky corridors with poor lighting to keep the player in a constant status of sheer terror. This will have you rooted to the spot in fear of what may be right around the corner and keeps you always thinking "Is this area safe for me to take a breather?"

The biggest addition to Dead Space 3 is the co-op system which is actually rather well implemented into the game but also has its drawbacks. On one side of the argument it really does make for an interesting game to play with a friend as you should work together to fend off the hordes of enemies that the game throws at you. The largest set back that the co-op system brings with it is that it massively breaks the game, as there are many in-game scenes that must be triggered by someone entering through a door or standing on a certain spot that will bring up a cut-scene featuring Isaac. The problem with this is that when Isaac was previously ten feet away from the spot and the other player stands on it, it brings for many inconsistencies within the game when Isaac immediately teleports from the other end of the level to where the other player is as soon as the cut-scene is triggered. It also massively detracts from the atmosphere of the game that comes from playing it alone and not having anyone constantly whispering in your ear taking away from the feeling of isolation that traditionally comes from playing a game such as this. The co-op system also leads to many rather irritating moments that are guaranteed to have you swearing at your friend when

The graphics for Dead Space 3 have taken a massive upward climb to make this one of the best looking third person adventure games on the market. Whereas the past two games looked decent but were nothing special, Dead Space 3 really makes the best possible use of the hardware available to become sheer eye candy. One scene in the game involves Isaac on a lift and an enormous breed of Necromorph breaking through the ceiling and it invokes true feelings of terror primarily due to how realistic the game looks. The sound design for the game is also top notch with some marvelous voice acting. The acting in Dead Space 1 and 2 were rather melodramatic and unbelievable but this has been completely rectified for the third game with some great voice acting and brilliant ambient noises scattered throughout the game to make for an even more terrifying experience. The game is not completely cutting edge in the graphical department and is not completely up to date in graphics but is certainly a huge hike upwards from the bland environments and lifeless people that littered the previous two games. This is a beautiful game with some great snow effects and the darker sections are rendered well enough to invoke feelings of sheer terror, even if at times it is a case of "The Boy Who cried Wolf" and there is nothing in that dark corner that you approached so slowly in horror.

The work bench has been vastly upgraded on this game with one of the most entertaining weapons customization schemes that has ever been placed in a game to date. In place of the nodes system that was found in the last two games, the player now has direct control over how they wish to create their weapons. If you want a gun with a shotgun attachment then feel free to create one but if you would rather have a faster firing machine gun then find the blue print and invest your hard earned spare parts found throughout the levels to make it for yourself. The feelings of satisfaction that the player gains from creating a truly overpowered weapon that they use to cut down many Necromorphs with no mercy are absolutely incredible and this is definitely a great addition to the game. There are so many options for customizing your weapon that this is something that one will spend a lot of time messing around with and restarting the game to find the perfect weapon combinations.

The enemy design for Dead Space 3 is incredible with some truly terrifying fresh creations joining the cast of terrifying old faces. One of these is a type of Necromorph insect that can swallow the player whole but also added into the game are human enemies with guns that leads to some tense shoot-outs. These gun fights will frequently become complete free-for-all brawls when Necromorphs are added into the mix which are a joy to take part in. The violent madness that made the previous two games in the series so good to play through is back in the best of form. Dead Space 3 is a game that never ceases to amaze and is constantly firing on all cylinders, making it an early candidate for Game Of The Year already. For those expecting a watered down experience due to the change of setting and the addition of co-op game play into a game like Dead Space, I recommend this highly as it is a masterpiece of gaming that invokes feelings of terror and is a complete thrill ride from start to finish.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 02/06/13, Updated 02/12/13

Game Release: Dead Space 3 (US, 02/05/13)

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